Fashion Futurum Startup Show

Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Russia saw Russia’s first fashion startup show called Fashion Futurum Startup Show. In his opening speech Alexander Shumsky highlighted how important and promising fashion technology is. It was the first time a startup show format was launched at the Fashion Week, which allowed for progressive incentives and ideas to get the attention of the professional community. Alexey Gusev, head of Ecosystem Monitoring Service at the Russian Venture Company said he was confident that designer clothes had all the chances to become a major segment of Russian exports. A special jury consisting of experts in education, fashion industry, venture investments and fashion media were invited to evaluate the participating startups. As a result, the winners of the competition chosen by the jury’s vote received an opportunity to join the business acceleration program in Milan’s Fashion Technology Accelerator or will take part in the major startup event, Slush Helsinki, Finland.

Several presentations and lectures were given as part of Fashion Futurum Startup Show at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Russia.

First, Alexey Borovkov, associate Professor and Vice-rector for innovative projects at St. Petersburg Polytechnic University, explained in his lecture hoy TechNet (cutting edge production technology) is now being integrated in FashionNet. In particular, he mentioned high demand on new materials, clothing that can adapt to different physiques, 3D printing, additive technologies, bionic design.

Fashion Needs Tech Specialists lecture was given by Sharif Sakr, a tech strategist and an observer at BBC, Forbes, Engadget. The speaker elaborated on the acceleration the world of fashion is going through, on the necessity of renovation and on how e-commerce works. He also provided a perspective analysis for the years 2017-2020, underscoring the growth of the online segment of the market, which is gaining momentum. After the end of the lecture the speaker took several questions from the audiences answering what the situation would be like in 10 years and what was needed to be changed in the system of education to avoid the lack of fashion IT specialists.

In his lecture Social Media Strategies for Fashion Startups lecture Stephan Rabimov, director of Social Media Center & Fashion Journalism, School of Fashion (Academy of Art University) told how to increase effectiveness of social media in order to choose the target audience correctly. The speaker underscored that via constantly carrying out statistic and monitoring measurements a business can identify its rivals’ strategy, locate blank spots in the structure of a modern market and take the leading share in its segment.

Fashion Futurum Startup Show saw presentations by 12 projects, which were in turn selected out of 70 applicants. Specially invited experts in fashion economy, business and media chose the best teams who offered the most interesting solutions. These were SuitApp and Metro Masks, which will now showcase their projects in Milan and Finland. SuitApp is an already available app made by Russian developers, which was launched at one of the markets, in Malaysia. Designed to be a virtual fitting room the app cooperates with retailers and allows the customer to ‘try’ clothes at the Internet store on its avatar featuring customer’s exact physique parameters and a selfie shot for facial data processing. The creator of Metro Masks is confident that Asian experience in wearing masks as a means of self-protection from unfavorable environmental conditions will take flight in Russia. The jury also chose other two applicants, F.Gene and The Dream Hoodie project, which will participate in Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Russia in March. F.Gene produces customizable eco-leather laptop bags, while The Dream Hoodie is an experimental tailor shop. Clothing constructor allows to create the desired hoodie is a matter of minutes and get maximum pleasure from the purchase. All other participants were offered further cooperation.

The expert jury of Fashion Futurum Startup Show featured participation of Alexey Borovkov, (Vice-rector for innovative projects at Peter the Great St. Petersburg Polytechnic University), Lau Geckler (СЕО, Geometry Global), Arseniy Gromov (Investment Director at Rambler&Co), Alexey Gusev (Head of Ecosystem Monitoring Service, RVC), Ivan Dementyev (Dean at Technology Entrepreneurship, MAMI Moscow State Technical University), Kirill Ignatiev (Chairman of the Board of Directors, Russian Investments Group of companies), Ekaterina Inozemtseva (Vice president, Skolkovo Foundation),  Rifad Islyaev (CEO, Saint Petersburg’s Fund for Assistance to Small Innovative Enterprises in Science and Technology),  Giusy Cannone (Managing Director, Fashion Technology Accelerator), Evgeny Kovnir (Deputy Director of the direction of Young Professionals, Agency for Strategic Initiatives (ASI)), Tatyana Komissarova (Dean of the Higher School of Marketing and Business Development), Vladimir Kosteev (CEO, Innovation and R&D Directors Club), Ruslan Mamedov (Director of Career Development Center, Plekhanov Russian University of Economics), Alexey Olin (Chairman of the Board, IVenturer Foundation), Evgeny Pen (Founder, Unified Intellectual Activity Results Depository JS), Ekaterina Petrova (Head of Innovative Educational Projects, RVC, head of GenerationS accelerator), Stephan Rabimov (Silicon Valley expert, director of Social Media Center & Fashion Journalism, School of Fashion, Academy of Art University), Sharif Sakr (tech strategist, 28 Knots Ltd, observer at BBC, Forbes, Engadget), Sergey Sarkisov (Vice President of “Novard group of companies”), Lyudmila Taborskaya (Director, IMG Fashion Russia), Vladimir Reshetnyak (Executive Director, Meucci Group), Alexander Shumsky (Executive President, Russian Fashion Council; President, Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Russia).

The title partner of the Fashion Week is Mercedes-Benz.

MBFW Russia partners are L’Oréal Professionnel (Official Stylist), Mary Kay (Official Make-Up Artist), DHL (Official Logistics Partner), Metropol (Official Hotel), Laska (Official Partner), ASUS (Official Partner)

You can follow all the events taking place on the catwalks of Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Russia from anywhere globally live at